Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Heart protein could be used to repair damage caused by heart attack

25.11.2004


A protein that the heart produces during its development could be redeployed after a heart attack to help the organ repair itself, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas have found.



The mouse-study findings could eventually lead to new treatments for heart disease in humans and could even change the way healthcare providers respond to people suffering from heart attacks. The research appears today’s edition of Nature and is available online. "If the protein has a similar effect in humans as it does in mice, the impact by sheer volume is great – nearly 1 million people have heart attacks every year just in the United States," said Dr. Deepak Srivastava, professor of molecular biology and pediatrics and the study’s senior author. "The delivery is very simple and avoids many of the problems of using stem cells."

While more common in adults, heart disease is the leading noninfectious cause of death in children younger than one year. Heart disease in children is usually caused by developmental abnormalities. The protein, Thymosin beta-4, is expressed by embryos during the heart’s development. It encourages the migration of heart cells and affects those cells’ survivability. The new findings show that the protein prevents cell death after an experimentally-induced heart attack and limits the degree of scar tissue formation. Thymosin beta-4 is already used in clinical trials to promote wound healing on the skin. As a result, the protein could enter clinical trials for treating the heart in the very near future, said Dr. Srivastava, co-director of the March of Dimes Birth Defects Center at UT Southwestern.


During their study, UT Southwestern researchers discovered that Thymosin beta-4 works in conjunction with two other proteins to promote survival and migration of heart muscle cells by activating the protein Akt/Protein Kinase B. Akt/PKB, when active, promotes cell survival.

After studying the activity of cells in culture, researchers created a mouse model by tying off the coronary artery of 58 adult mice, simulating a heart attack. Half of the mice were given Thymosin beta-4 systemically, directly into the heart, or through both routes immediately after the ligation. The other half were given control injections of saline immediately after the artery was tied off. Researchers found that Thymosin beta-4 caused fewer cells in the affected part of the heart to die, resulting in improved function even several weeks after the heart attack. Researchers now believe that Thymosin beta-4 changes cell metabolism to create stronger heart muscle cells that can resist the low oxygen conditions after a heart attack.

The next step, Dr. Srivastava said, is to determine the most effective dose, the optimal time to administer Thymosin beta-4 and how long after an attack the protein can be given to be effective.

Other UT Southwestern researchers involved were Dr. Ildiko Bock-Marquette, a postdoctoral researcher in pediatrics and co-lead author; Ankur Saxena, graduate student research assistant in the genetics and development program and co-lead author; Dr. J. Michael DiMaio, assistant professor of cardiovascular and thoracic surgery; Michael White, a research assistant in cardiovascular and thoracic surgery; and Glenn Adams IV, a research technician in cardiovascular and thoracic surgery.

The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health, the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, the American Heart Association and the Donald W. Reynolds Clinical Cardiovascular Research Center funded the study.

Staishy Bostick Siem | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.utsouthwestern.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht A Map of the Cell’s Power Station
18.08.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

nachricht On the way to developing a new active ingredient against chronic infections
18.08.2017 | Deutsches Zentrum für Infektionsforschung

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>